In about a week, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month will end. The pink ribbons will be put away. The 5k fundraisers will focus their attentions on another worthy cause. Day to day life will ensue and move on. Until next year.
But for some (too many these days, unfortunately), like photographer, Angelo Merendino, the battle with cancer will create an indelible imprint that will never be erased. When Angelo met his wife, Jennifer in 2007, he knew that she was ‘the one.’ It was love at first sight. Four months after they were married, Jennifer was diagnosed with breast cancer.
The side effects of 4 years of treatment and the daily struggle was difficult for their friends and family to understand and so Angelo picked up his camera in an effort to tell their story.
My photographs show this daily life. They humanize the face of cancer, on the face of my wife. They show the challenge, difficulty, fear, sadness and loneliness that we faced, that Jennifer faced, as she battled this disease. Most important of all, they show our Love. These photographs do not define us, but they are us.
As I looked through this series, part of me really wanted to see the last images be those of a happy, newly healthy, Jennifer Merendino. As the reality of it set in, I could feel the raw pain of the empty bed and the cold tombstone.
Angelo has complied all his images into an ebook called, “The Battle We Didn’t Choose.” A portion of the proceeds will go to the non-profit organization, The Love You Share, that Angelo started in her honor, to provide financial assistance to women who are receiving treatment for breast cancer.
The Love You Share has applied to the Internal Revenue Service for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. Donations to The Love You Share are not currently tax-deductible while its application is pending. If The Love You Share receives tax-exempt status, donations received while its application was pending may be treated as tax-deductible contributions retroactive to the date of its formation.”
CREDITS : Photographs by Angelo Merendino have been used with permission for SLR Lounge. Do not copy, modify or re-post this article or images without express permission from SLR Lounge and the artist.
[Images via @Imgur]